Ohio University

Psychological Tips for Managing Coronavirus Concerns

If you are feeling overwhelmed by the constant news and alerts regarding the Coronavirus, there are things you can do to help you manage your psychological distress. Recognizing the signs of increased mental and emotional distress is important. Are you experiencing any of the following?

  • Increased anxiety, worry, fear and/or feelings of being overwhelmed
  • Persistent depressive symptoms such as sadness, tearfulness, and/or loss of interest
  • Feelings of hopelessness and/or paralyzing fear about the future
  • Sleep difficulties
  • Isolating self from others
  • Thoughts about death, dying, and/or suicide
  • Unhealthy coping (substance abuse, self-injury, engaging in risky behaviors)

Psychological Health Tips:

  • Acknowledge your feeling and emotions. Allow yourself time to reflect on your feelings and how you are reacting or coping to the distress.

  • Maintain your normal day-to-day activities.

  • Seek accurate information from credible news sources (https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/index.html)
  • Limit your exposure to social media reporting.
  • Follow protections and prevention tips provided by qualified medical professionals, including Ohio University’s Campus Care (https://www.ohiohealth.com/ohiohealth-physician-group/our-specialties/p…).
  • Practice self-care (eat, sleep, and exercise) and calming techniques (for example: yoga, reading, breathing, mindfulness, meditation).
  • Seek out support and campus resources. Reach out to family and friends as well as campus resources for opportunities to share and talk about your concerns especially if your distress is not lessening. See also The Hope Center's Surviving COVID-19: A #RealCollege Guide for Students

Practicing Respect and Civility:

  • Be thoughtful about your behaviors, attitudes, biases, words, or thoughts about people from other countries.
  • Avoid generalizing or stigmatizing someone who is sick as having the Coronavirus.
  • Seek accurate information about how the Coronavirus spreads (visiting a country with an outbreak versus being from a country with an outbreak).
  • Practice self-care and seek good healthcare if you believe you are sick.
  • Treat others with empathy, kindness, and compassion.

Know the CDC Facts about Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19): 

Fact 1: Diseases can make anyone sick regardless of their race or ethnicity.

  • People of Asian descent, including Chinese Americans, are NOT more likely to get COVID-19 than any other American. Help stop fear by letting people know that being of Asian descent does NOT increase the change of getting or spreading COVID-19.

Fact 2: Some people are at increased risk of getting COVID-19.

  • People who have been in close contact with a person known to have COVID-19 or people who live in or have recently been in an area with ongoing spread are at an increased risk of exposure.

Fact 3: Someone who has completed quarantine or has been released from isolation does not pose a risk of infection to other people.

  • For up-to-date information, visit CDC's coronavirus disease 2019 web page. (www.cdc.gov/COVID19)

Fact 4: You can help stop COVID-19 by knowing the signs and symptoms:

  • Fever
  • Cough
  • Shortness of breath

Seek medical advice if you: 

  • Develop symptoms AND have been in close contact with a person known to have COVID-19 or if you live in or have recently been in an area with ongoing spread of COVID-19.

Fact 5: There are simple things you can do to help keep yourself and others healthy.

  • Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds, especially after blowing your nose, coughing, or sneezing; going to the bathroom; and before eating or preparing food.
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth with unwashed hands.
  • Stay home when you are sick.
  • Cover your cough or sneeze with a tissue, then throw the tissue in the trash.

Additional Resources: 

To seek services or to speak with a counselor at Counseling and Psychological Services, please call 740-593-1616.

No In-person appointments are offered at this time. We are working toward TeleMental Health Services.

During business hours, phone consultation is available to any student (in place of drop in appointment). If you need to talk to a counselor, please call 740-593-1616.